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The Universal Credit Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2016

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PART 5Social rented sector other than temporary accommodation

Application of Part 5

29.—(1) This Part—

(a)applies to renters who are liable to make rent payments to a provider of social housing; but

(b)does not apply to any renter who falls within paragraph 19(1)(b) (temporary accommodation).

(2) Sub-paragraph (1) applies irrespective of whether renters are also liable to make service charge payments.

Reduction in certain cases of amounts to be taken into account

Deduction from relevant payments of amounts relating to use of particular accommodation

30.  In determining the amount of any relevant payment to be taken into account under paragraph 5, a deduction is to be made for any amount which the Department is satisfied—

(a)is included in the relevant payment, but

(b)relates to the supply to the accommodation of a commodity (such as water or fuel) for use by any member of the renter’s extended benefit unit.

Relevant payments excessive

31.  Where it appears to the Department that—

(a)the amount of any relevant payment for which the renter is liable in respect of accommodation occupied by the renter is greater than it is reasonable to meet by way of the housing costs element under this Part, and

(b)the amount of the relevant payment that, at the time of the calculation under this Part, a landlord might reasonably have expected to obtain is a lower amount,

the lower amount is to be used in making the calculation under this Part instead of the amount of the relevant payment for which the renter is liable, unless the Department is satisfied that it is not appropriate to use that lower amount.

The calculation of the housing costs element under this Part

The amount of housing costs element

32.—(1) The amount of the renter’s housing costs element under this Part is to be calculated by reference to the formula—

where—

“S” is the amount resulting from whichever of paragraph 33 or 34 applies in the renter’s case,

“HCC” is the sum of the housing cost contributions (if any) under paragraph 12.

Determining the amount from which HCC deductions are to be made

33.  Except where paragraph 34 applies, amount S referred to in paragraph 32 is to be found as follows—

Step 1

Determine which relevant payments are to be taken into account under paragraph 5 and determine the amount of each of them (applying paragraphs 30 and 31 as necessary).

Step 2

Determine the period in respect of which each relevant payment is payable and, in accordance with paragraph 6, determine the amount of the payment in respect of a month.

Step 3

If there is more than one relevant payment, add together the amounts determined in step 2 in relation to all relevant payments.

Step 4

Determine under paragraph 35(1) whether an under-occupation deduction is to be made and, if one is to be made, determine the amount of the deduction under paragraph 35(2) and deduct it from the amount resulting from step 2 or 3 (as the case may be).

The result is amount S from which the sum of the housing cost contributions are to be deducted under paragraph 32.

Determining the amount from which HCC deductions are to be made: joint tenants

34.—(1) This paragraph applies where, in respect of the accommodation occupied by the renter, one or more persons other than the renter is liable to make relevant payments which are of the same description as those for which the renter is liable and which are to be taken into account under paragraph 5.

(2) Amount S referred to in paragraph 32 is to be found as follows.

Step 1

Determine the total of all relevant payments referred to in sub-paragraph (1) for which the renter and others are liable in respect of the accommodation taken as a whole (applying paragraphs 30 and 31 as necessary).

Step 2

Determine the period in respect of which each relevant payment is payable and, in accordance with paragraph 6, determine the amount of the payment in respect of a month.

Step 3

Add together all of the amounts determined in step 2 in relation to all relevant payments.

Step 4

Find amount S in accordance with whichever of sub-paragraphs (3) to (5) applies in the renter’s case.

The result is amount S from which the sum of the housing cost contributions are to be deducted under paragraph 32.

(3) Where the only persons liable to make relevant payments are listed persons, amount S is the amount resulting from step 3 in sub-paragraph (2) less the amount of the under-occupation deduction (if any) required by paragraph 35.

(4) Where the persons liable for the relevant payments are one or more listed persons and one or more other persons, amount S is to be found by the applying the formula—

where—

“A” is the amount resulting from step 3 in sub-paragraph (2),

“B” is the total number of all persons (including listed persons) liable to make the relevant payments, and

“C” is the number of listed persons.

(5) If the Department is satisfied that it would be unreasonable to determine amount S in accordance with sub-paragraph (4), amount S is to be determined in such manner as the Department considers appropriate in all the circumstances, having regard (among other things) to the number of persons liable and the proportion of the relevant payments for which each of them is liable.

Under-occupancy deduction

35.—(1) A deduction for under-occupancy is to be made under this paragraph where the number of bedrooms in the accommodation exceeds the number of bedrooms to which the renter is entitled under paragraphs 7 to 11.

(2) Where a deduction is to be made, the amount of the deduction is to be determined by the formula—

where—

“A”—

(a)

in relation to any deduction under paragraph 33, is the amount resulting from step 2 or 3 in that paragraph (as the case may be), or

(b)

in relation to any deduction under paragraph 34(3), is the amount resulting from step 3 in paragraph 34(2);

“B” is the relevant percentage.

(3) The relevant percentage is 14% in the case of one excess bedroom.

(4) The relevant percentage is 25% in the case of 2 or more excess bedrooms.

(5) No deduction for under-occupation is to be made in calculating the amount of the renter’s housing costs element under this Part in any case to which regulation 27(4) to (6) (equity–sharing lease) applies.

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